Victorian Powys for primary  schools
Powys Digital History Project
The flannel industry
  The new factories  

Fulling mills had been using the power of water to drive machinery since well before Victorian times, but now the other wool making processes began to be water powered. Factories were built by the rivers Severn and Clywedog for carding and fulling and eventually they included weaving as well so that the whole process could be carried out under one roof.


The 1860s were the boom years for flannel in the Llanidloes area with new factories being built and some of the weaving shops being converted to factories. The two mills seen above were owned and run by the Dakin brothers.
The smaller communities like Cwmbelan and Tylwch with their own wool mills, were part of the growth of the industry. Even remote places like Tylwch were able to exploit improved transport links brought by the railway. (see pages on the new railways).
Some of the factories installed steam engines to make sure they could run the machines even when the river was low.

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